Housing report

Landmark housing development officially opened in west Belfast

The largest housing development currently under construction in Northern Ireland has been officially opened by Communities Minister, Gordon Lyons MLA.

The Black Ridge development in west Belfast will see Apex Housing Association (Apex) provide 653 new homes, including 549 social homes to rent and 104 affordable homes for sale. Constructed by the Braidwater Group, the keys to 50 of these new homes have been handed over in recent weeks to the first residents of Black Ridge, with the entire development expected to be completed by 2028.

The £102 million scheme has been supported by £52.4 million Housing Association Grant funding from the Department for Communities and £49.4 million private finance investment by Apex. The development will also feature a community hub with MUGA (multi-use games area), two care homes, a neighbourhood retail centre, a hotel, and a number of children’s playparks.

Speaking at the opening event, Communities Minister Gordon Lyons MLA, commented: “As Minister, I am pleased to be opening this transformational project. Landmark developments such as Black Ridge are a significant step in addressing the housing need which exists in this community. Everyone has a right to a decent standard of housing. And yet, a home is much more than bricks and mortar. It begins with a roof over someone’s head. But it extends far beyond that, into a collaborative effort which supports individuals and families.

“We recognise that houses can be designed and built, but communities are developed and nurtured. I commend Apex Housing Association, and indeed all those involved, and wish the residents every happiness in their new homes.”

“The scale of this development means it will continue to play a significant role in addressing the demand for social and affordable housing in west Belfast.”
Peter Caldwell, Chairperson of Apex Housing Association

Pictured with Harry Dyer from Apex Housing Association, Nicola Marshall and her daughter Fiadh getting the keys to their new home in Black Ridge View.

One of the first residents to move into her new home at Black Ridge was Nicola Marshall. Nicola and her family waited two decades for a suitable home in the area and were delighted to be offered their new house in Black Ridge View: “It has made a big impact on us as a family. After renting privately for 20 years, it is great to know that this house is all ours. As a mummy, it has taken a weight off my shoulders knowing that my kids now have their family home.

“It is close to the shops, my daughter Fiadh’s school; and near our family, who all live in and around the Andersonstown area. We are really excited to be in the middle of a growing community which will see lots of families living together, with a sports hub, hotel and playparks all on our doorstep.”

Peter Caldwell, Chairperson of Apex Housing Association, says: “We are delighted to mark the official opening of Black Ridge and to recognise the impact that these new homes will have on local people and families. The scale of this development means it will continue to play a significant role in addressing the demand for social and affordable housing in west Belfast. We look forward to seeing this new community grow and develop in the coming years.”

Housing Executive Chair, Nicole Lappin, says: “Congratulations to Apex Housing and all the other partners involved in delivering these new properties at Black Ridge in west Belfast. Social housing developments of this nature, funded by grant from the Department for Communities and the Housing Executive, are crucial to tackling current waiting lists across Northern Ireland. Fifty families are already enjoying their new homes at this site and I very much look forward to witnessing further allocations to hundreds of households in the weeks and months ahead.”

Joe McGinnis, Managing Director of the Braidwater Group, comments: “Having started onsite in 2021 and recently handed over the first of the 653 homes, the Braidwater Group is delighted to be involved in a significant milestone and the official launch of Glenmona, or Black Ridge as it will be known going forward. It was our pleasure to welcome Minister for Communities, Gordon Lyons, to officially open Black Ridge and we thank all of our partners involved in ensuring the development matures and helps alleviate the significant housing demand for the area.”
Construction began on the Black Ridge development in March 2021, with the first homes completed in late 2023. ‘Black Ridge’ was chosen as the street name of the development with the help of pupils from St Teresa’s Primary School, which is located next to the development.

For more information about the Black Ridge development, please contact:

Apex Housing Association
10 Butcher Street
BT48 6HL
T: 028 7130 4800
W: www.apex.org.uk

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